Category Archives: gramstory

Grambling State University Wins Hospitality Award from Ruston Lincoln CVB

RUSTON, LA (January 10, 2022) – The Ruston Lincoln Convention & Visitors Bureau is proud to announce the 2021 Lincoln Parish Hospitality Award recipient is Grambling State University. The award will be presented at the Ruston-Lincoln Chamber of Commerce Awards Banquet on Tuesday, January 25, 2022 at 6:00 p.m. at the Ruston Civic Center.

Since 1999, the Ruston Lincoln CVB has recognized members of the community who make a significant impact on our area and help fulfill the CVB’s mission by honoring them with the Lincoln Parish Hospitality Award. The Ruston Lincoln CVB is honored to present this year’s award to Grambling State University. GSU President Rick Gallot will be accepting the award on behalf of the university.

“The CVB had the pleasure of working closely with Grambling State University over the last few years as they brought several exciting events to the GSU campus,” said Amanda Carrier, Ruston Lincoln CVB President/CEO. “In particular, the NAIA Football National Championship games and the Brown Girls Do Gymnastics Conference brought numerous visitors to the area and had a significant economic impact on our community.”

Grambling State University combines the academic strengths of a major university with the benefits of a small college, a combination that enables students to grow and learn in a positive environment. In addition to being one of the country’s top producers of African American graduates, Grambling continues to build a reputation as a host for large athletic events; most recently the 2019 and 2020 NAIA Football National Championships, as well as the 2021 Brown Girls Do Gymnastics Conference.

“We are thankful to the Ruston Lincoln CVB for the recognition of community service, engagement, and economic development we are honored to provide,” said Grambling State President Rick Gallot. “Advancement and Athletics staff at Grambling State University are passionate about creating opportunities that promote the versatility of the campus, the hospitality of our team, and the appeal of Lincoln Parish.”

The staff at Grambling State was vital in the success of each event, as they served on planning committees prior to the events, worked tirelessly with organizers on event logistics, welcomed athletes, coaches, and fans when they arrived in town, and helped in various capacities day-of to ensure the events ran smoothly.

“The CVB greatly appreciates the work President Gallot and his team have done to enhance the University’s profile for hosting large events, as well as helping meet the CVB’s mission of promoting Lincoln Parish as a quality place to visit,” said Carrier.

About the Ruston Lincoln Convention & Visitors Bureau

The Ruston Lincoln Convention & Visitors Bureau is a destination marketing organization that works to create, preserve and enhance a variety of quality visitor experiences through the promotion of Lincoln Parish. For more information, visit

Grambling State University launches program to empower residents, students, and faculty to prevent type 2 diabetes

Grambling, LA – November 23, 2021 – Prediabetes is a serious health condition where blood sugar levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Approximately 88 million American adults have prediabetes – and without taking action, many people with prediabetes can develop type 2 diabetes within 5 years. In partnership with Well-Ahead Louisiana, Grambling State University is launching a program to help students, faculty, and residents with prediabetes in northeast Louisiana prevent type 2 diabetes by offering virtual lifestyle change classes. The program, Change Your Lifestyle. Change Your Life. (CYL2) is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Diabetes Prevention Program. It teaches people how to incorporate healthy habits into daily life, cutting their risk for type 2 diabetes by more than half. The program also helps to reduce high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and other chronic conditions.

“People can feel overwhelmed when they are diagnosed with prediabetes, but developing type 2 diabetes is preventable,” said Larry Proctor, Ph.D., CYL2 Coordinator at Grambling State University. “CYL2 provides participants with a support system, tools, and knowledge so they can feel empowered to make lifestyle changes that will help them lose weight and improve their overall health.”

Grambling State University conducts online orientations where people interested in the classes can learn more about the program and ask questions. An orientation will be held on Thursday, December 9, from 11:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m.

Student and adult class cohorts will begin in January 2022. People interested in participating in the classes must call 318-274-2294  to determine eligibility and register. The classes will meet online for one year. In the first four months of the program, classes will meet 16 times. In the final eight months of the program, classes will meet 12 more times to help participants maintain healthy lifestyle changes. CYL2 is covered by many insurance companies, including Medicare for those 65 and older. A limited number of scholarships are available for those without insurance coverage for the program.

CYL2 provides participants in the program with a trained lifestyle coach who teaches them how to make positive daily changes they can stick with. You will also have the support of others making positive lifestyle changes as well. The classes cover:

  • Shopping and cooking for health
  • Managing chronic stress
  • Understanding how emotions can trigger eating
  • Practicing self-care
  • Achieving weight goals during midlife
  • Staying motivated
  • Making good food choices away from home
  • Knowing what to do when weight loss stalls

With such serious consequences, preventing type 2 diabetes is a major public health concern. The good news is that prediabetes can be reversed by making healthier lifestyle decisions.
Having prediabetes increases your risk for severe health conditions like:

  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Blindness
  • Kidney failure
  • Loss of toes, feet, or legs

About Prediabetes

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 3 US adults have prediabetes – and most of those with prediabetes don’t know they have it. People at risk of prediabetes or type 2 diabetes:

    • Are overweight
    • Are 45 years of age or older
    • Have a parent or sibling that has type 2 diabetes
    • Are physically active fewer than 3 times per week
    • Gave birth to a baby that weighed more than 9 pounds
    • Had diabetes while pregnant (gestational diabetes)

About CYL2
CYL2 is conducted in partnership with the Black Women’s Health Imperative (BWHI) through a cooperative agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Since its inception in 2012, BWHI has expanded CYL2 to several cities throughout the United States. The goal of CYL2 is to inspire participants to sustain healthy lifestyle changes.


The Black Women’s Health Imperative is the only national organization dedicated to improving the health and wellness of the nation’s 21 million Black women and girls — physically, emotionally, and financially. It identifies the most pressing health issues and invests in the best of the best strategies, partners, and organizations that share their goal: ensuring Black women live longer, healthier, more prosperous lives.


Grambling State University combines the academic strengths of a major university with the benefits of a small college, a combination that enables our students to grow and learn in a serene and positive environment. We offer more than forty (40) undergraduate and graduate degree and certificate programs through four colleges, including two professional schools and a graduate school. Additional academic support units include the University College, Earl Lester Cole Honors College, Continuing Education, and Service-Learning, and Army ROTC. National, regional, and local employers recruit graduates from Grambling’s excellent programs in nursing, computer science, teacher education, the arts, and other academic areas.

In addition to being one of the country’s top producers of African American graduates and the top producer of Computer Information Science grads in Louisiana, Grambling is the home of the World Famed Tiger Marching Band and the legendary college football coach Eddie Robinson, Sr., whose tenure is memorialized in a campus museum, funded and operated by the state of Louisiana. GSU is a member of the University of Louisiana System and the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. Also listed on the Louisiana African American Heritage Trail, Grambling State University is steeped in history, with a longstanding tradition of excellence, Grambling State University continues to emphasize the value and importance of each student, exemplified by our motto: Where Everybody Is Somebody.

Randy Huggins, Executive Producer and Writer of Hit STARZ Network Drama BMF, Says Grambling State Changed His Life

GRAMBLING, La. – Nov. 16, 2021 – Before becoming executive producer and writer of the hit STARZ network drama “BMF,” Randy Huggins built up his entertainment career on several successful shows. It is the experience at Grambling State University that forever changed the Detroit native’s life.

“Grambling changed my life because it offered a slower pace than living in a city as big and treacherous as Detroit,” he said. “The faculty and students at Grambling [State] really care about your wellbeing.”

Huggins said he was a lost college student until GSU faculty members helped guide him.

“Mr. Garner told me that I was gonna be a history major. So, I started pursuing a history degree and Dr. Mildred Gallot as well as Ms. Cato really took care of me, especially once I started doing my work-study in that department,” he said. “She made sure the courses I was taking would help me graduate. She encouraged me to enroll in Mr. [Karl] Norman’s drama class. At the time, I knew nothing about drama and would get up and act out these skits from situations that happened in my life.”

Huggins’ real-life drama also captured the attention of one of his classmates.

“One of the students, Erica Wright, used to tell me that I was lying all the time and that she didn’t know anyone’s life as dramatic as mine,” Huggins recalled. “She encouraged me to start writing that stuff down to go in a book or movie. I had never considered writing prior to that class and that student, who three years later released her first album, was Erykah Badu.”

After graduating from GSU with a history degree, he worked as a teacher in Detroit before relocating to Los Angeles.

Huggins is now the creator, writer, and showrunner of the STARZ’s drama “BMF,” and an executive producer along with Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson. Before that, he was a consulting producer on “Power Book II: Ghost” and spent two seasons on the FOX drama, “Star.” He also served as a consulting producer on BET’s “The Quad” and was the showrunner of BET’s “Rebel,” which he executive produced with John Singleton.

Huggins also wrote on three seasons of the STARZ hit drama “Power “and later served as the show’s co-executive producer. He launched his writing career on FX’s police drama “The Shield,” where he served as the writers’ assistant for four seasons. That same year, he joined the writing staff of “The Unit” and went on to become the executive story editor on the STARZ drama, “Crash.” Then, he became a co-producer on NBC’s medical drama, “Trauma.” Huggins also served as a producer on “Criminal Minds.”

It is the “BMF” drama that is close to home for Huggins. Short for Black Mafia Family, the show is set in Detroit and inspired by the true story of two brothers who “rose from the decaying streets of southwest Detroit in the late 1980s and gave birth to one of the most influential crime families in this country,” Huggins explained. “Demetrius “Big Meech” Flenory’s charismatic leadership, Terry “Southwest T” Flenory’s business acumen, and the fraternal partnership’s vision beyond the drug trade and into the world of Hip Hop would render the brothers iconic on a global level. The show is now in its second season.

“This is a story about love, kinship, and capitalism in the pursuit of the American dream,” Huggins said.

The show is just the latest in his pursuit of his Hollywood dreams.

“The best advice or encouragement I’d give to anyone pursuing their dreams is to honor the 4 P’s: planning, patience, persistence, and prayer,” Huggins said. “You have to map out your goals and the obstacles you may face achieving them. You have to be patient and understand the time it may take to accomplish your dreams. You have to be relentlessly persistent to make that objective happen. And you have to pray about it.”

Grambling’s Cloud Computing Program Reaches for the Sky with Industry Partners

First Cloud Computing Program in Louisiana Draws Interest Nationally  

Online Cloud Program Student PhotoGRAMBLING, La. – September 4, 2020 – As Grambling State University launches its innovative Cloud Computing program, a new industry partner has joined to support the effort.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) has signed on with its AWS Educate program to offer support to the institution’s unique computer science programs.
Grambling State University is Louisiana’s top producer of African American computer science and computer information system graduates. The newly launched Cloud Computing program is the first of its kind in the state.

Through AWS Educate, the company’s global initiative to support cloud learning for students and faculty, educational organizations receive benefits such as:

• Guidance in building an educational institution’s degree programs in Cloud Computing to ensure that the program outcomes align with the skills necessary to prepare a student for AWS industry certifications and employment in the field of cloud computing.

• Access to curriculum resources – including syllabi, instructional content, hands-on activities and assessments – that support student learning in Cloud Computing.

• Access to content to support professional development and technical training for faculty members who will deliver program coursework.

• AWS Promotional Credit to ensure that students have an opportunity to practice and apply their knowledge using the AWS console.

• Access to the AWS Educate Job Board, which contains cloud-related job postings from Amazon and our customers and partners, to help match Educate members with employers looking for cloud-skilled talent.

“We’re continuously working to prepare students for the enormous opportunities in today’s economy,” said President Rick Gallot. “We are grateful for partners like AWS who support these important efforts.”

Gallot was invited to meet the president of AWS, and the relationship that led to this designation for Grambling State was born. AWS support helped Grambling State earn state approval of the program.

Since Gallot made the AWS connection, three Grambling State professors have attended AWS Academy and Cloud Computing curriculum has come to the campus.

Dr. Yenumula Reddy, professor and program coordinator in the department of computer science, is working hand-in-hand with AWS Cloud Computing experts to develop the curriculum. They are continuing to work together on AWS course contents, Dr. Reddy said.

Cybersecurity student Alexis White is among those interested in learning about Cloud Computing.

“We are in need of more professionals that have a passion for Cloud Computing,” she said. “That starts with our students at Grambling State University being the catalyst for our future.”

The Louisiana Technical and Community College System also is preparing a two-year Cloud Computing curriculum that will bridge to Grambling State’s four-year program.

“When universities work hand in hand with industry partners to identify the skills needed to meet the needs of a rapidly growing sector students always benefit,” said Commissioner of Higher Education Kim Hunter Reed. “As the state focuses on developing talent so Louisiana prospers, new programs like cloud computing will play a major role in attracting new students and graduating them in high demand, high-wage careers. Grambling has been laser focused on creating a top-notch degree and we recognize their innovation and persistence.”

Professionals with these skills are projected to remain in high demand for decades to come.

According to Forbes, in 2019 there were 50,248 cloud computing positions available in the U.S. from 3,701 employers and 101,913 open positions worldwide.

“Grambling State University is excited about the approval of the new program in Cloud Computing,” Dr. Connie Walton, vice president of academic affairs and provost, said. “The global Cloud Computing market size is expected to grow to $623.3 billion by 2023. The degree program in Cloud Computing will allow Grambling State University to play a major role in ensuring that workforce needs related to cloud computing can be met.”

Beginning with the graduating class of 2024, Grambling State alums can do the title of Cloud Architect, Cloud Consultant, IoT Engineer and many other high demand tech-based positions with a median starting salary over $80k for many positions.

Other industry partners for Cloud Computing include LED, Oracle Academy, Oracle NetSuite, Cisco Networking Academy, Microsoft, IBM and Google Analytics Academy.

For more information about Grambling State’s computer science programs, visit


About Grambling State University 
Grambling State University, located in Grambling, Louisiana, is a historically black university founded in 1901 that combines the academic strengths of a major university with the benefits of a small college. This combination enables students to grow and learn in a serene and positive environment. The 590-acre campus offers 43 undergraduate and graduate academic programs. A member of the University of Louisiana System, Grambling State University has been accredited by 13 accrediting associations and holds accreditations in all programs required by the Louisiana Board of Regents. With a longstanding tradition of excellence, Grambling State University continues to emphasize the value and importance of each student, exemplified by our motto: Where Everybody Is Somebody.

Tisha Arnold
(318) 243-5012

Grambling State Wins Gold HBCUgrow LEAD Awards for Best Leadership and Innovation

Grambling State Wins! Lead 2020 - The Intersection of Business and EducationPresident Gallot and University Honored by Peer Institutions for Excellence in 5 Categories

GRAMBLING, La – April 8, 2020 – Grambling State University received Gold Awards for Best Leadership and LEAD Innovation for a total of five award wins in different categories: 

Best Leadership
Gold Award
President Rick Gallot, Grambling State University

LEAD Innovation
Gold Award
Grambling State University

LEAD Military-Friendly
Silver Award
Grambling State University

LEAD Website
Bronze Award
Grambling State University,

LEAD Marketing
Bronze Award
Grambling State University

“I’m exceedingly grateful for the outstanding team that makes growth and innovation possible at Grambling State,” said President Gallot. “Our eyes are on the bright future ahead for our students. Everything we do is focused on ensuring their potential is realized.”

For the third consecutive year, President Gallot’s administration has earned recognition for outstanding leadership from HBCUgrow. Standout aspects contributing to the win are the University’s 7-year enrollment high, $50M partnership with Magic Johnson’s SodexoMAGIC, and the addition of Louisiana’s first 4-year degree in Cybersecurity.    

“We are working to show the world what’s possible when student outcomes are the first priority.” said Dr. Connie Walton, Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs. 

For top honors in LEAD Innovation, the HBCUgrow committee considered the University’s groundbreaking of Louisiana’s first Digital Library and Learning Commons, the initiation of the President’s Friends of Technology Advisory Board, and work to launch the first Cloud Computing degree in the state. 

Winners were selected in several categories based on peer nominations and input and data reviews by a panel of judges.  This year’s categories included LEAD Innovation, LEAD Marketing, LEAD Website, LEAD Military-Friendly and Best Leadership. Other winning institutions in different ranks and categories included Howard, Southern, and Jackson State Universities. 


President & Mrs. Gallot on the passing of former UL Lafayette President, Dr. Ray Authement

To the Authement Family:  

On behalf of our entire Grambling State University community, we want to offer our sincerest condolences on the passing of Dr. Ray Authement. 

He is remembered with deep appreciation for his 34 years of service to the UL System as President of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. His tenure and temperament will be remembered with reverence and his example of outstanding leadership will live on through the countless lives that he impacted. Dr. Authement’s exemplary record excellent service by a university president is matched only by the respect and adoration he exhibited for higher education in Louisiana.   We will remember his life and contributions as an example of a person driven by purpose and visionary leadership.  

As you endure this challenging time, we hope you take comfort in the ongoing impact of his extraordinary life. We are grateful for his work and will keep your family lifted in our prayers.  

Forever Grambling,

President & Mrs. Rick Gallot

Grambling State Hosts Grammy-Winning Artists, BET, and adidas for Homecoming 2019

square-monicaAward-Winning R&B Artists Monica, Joe, and Ari Lennox to Headline November 1 Concert  
GRAMBLING, La – September 23, 2019 – Today, Grambling State University announced its 2019 Homecoming lineup will include headline performances by award-winning artists Monica, Joe, and Ari Lennox at the “Vibe-ish” concert, Friday, November 1, 2019, at 7 p.m.   Continue reading

Grammy Nominated, Musiq Soulchild to Headline Grambling State’s Bayou Classic Fundraiser

Combo-musiq-jubileeInaugural President’s Kicks Ball to Feature R&B Star and DJ Jubilee November 29

GRAMBLING, LA – September 17, 2019 – Today, Grambling State University announced that its Bring it Home 2019 Campaign finale will feature Grammy Award winner Musiq Soulchild as it celebrates the close of its $1 million campaign at 8 p.m. on November 29.  Continue reading

Grambling State Awards More Than $300,000 in Technology Scholarships

Ten Incoming Freshman Technology Students Receive Four-Years of Academic Funding

TECHTOUR_DSC5387GRAMBLING, LA — September 4, 2019 – Today, Grambling State University announced it has awarded ten tuition and fee scholarships to 10 incoming freshman majoring in technology-related degree programs as a part of its Technology Tour Scholarship program. 

“This scholarship is one of the many ways we are working to make higher education attainable for the next generation of cybersecurity and computer science leaders,” said President Rick Gallot. “We look forward to supporting the success of these students who made the great decision to choose Grambling State.”  Continue reading

Cybersecurity Summit at Grambling State to Feature Origin Bank, AT&T, General Dynamics and Century Link

Cyber security network concept. Master key connect virtual networking graphic and blur laptop with flare light effect

Grambling State University Cybersecurity Summit.

Technology Leaders Convene for a Two-Day Workshop and Employment Fair August 29

GRAMBLING, LA – August 22, 2019 – Grambling State University, home of Louisiana’s first bachelor of Cybersecurity degree, will host 11 executives for a two-day Cybersecurity Summit August 29-30. The event will connect students with leading technology professionals, including the Chief Information Officer of Dine Brands Global, which owns Applebee’s and IHOP. Continue reading